By Samuel M Acosta
This review contains spoilers for “Halloween Ends.”
I was absolutely hyped to see this movie. Along with most people, I really enjoyed the first installment of the “Halloween” franchise reboot and despite popular opinion, I love the second installment. So when it came to the final part of the trilogy, I was ready to dive in and love whatever was there, despite its flaws. Well, dive in I did… and I hit my head on the concrete because this movie had less depth than the shallow end of a pool. Not only does the plot feel disjointed and nonsensical, but it also is nearly devoid of the only required component of a “Halloween” movie: Michael Meyers himself.
“Halloween Ends” starts off by telling us the story of Corey (Rohan Campbell), a young man who accidentally killed a child he was babysitting on Halloween night the year after the events of the first two movies. The film then jumps ahead to three more years later, where Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis) is doing her best to move on. Having moved into a house with her granddaughter Andi (Allyson Nelson), Laurie is setting aside her paranoia and living a more normal life.
Things change, however, when Corey finds Michael Meyers hiding in the sewers, yet Michael spares his life. This sets Corey down a dark path as he tries to become like Michael, bringing victims to him and going out and killing innocent people in his likeness. Eventually, Corey turns on Michael and takes his mask, set on destroying the town that turned on him years earlier.
Just simply summarizing the plot just reminds me of how utterly disappointing it was. Somehow, they decide to end the trilogy of “Halloween” and Michael Meyer’s return to Haddonfield by completely sidelining the iconic character, and instead having some new kid masquerade as him all around town. We only see Michael be the horrifying killer we know him to be in a few short moments of the film and is only highlighted at the end in possibly one of the most anti-climactic fights I’ve ever seen.
The set-up that the first two films laid down for Michael was spectacular and I even saw a glimpse of an incredible arc for the character in the first few minutes of the film. But they quickly jump to spitting in the face of the very thing that makes the franchise so special in favor of a character that I honestly couldn’t care less about. It is also spitting in the audience’s faces all the promotional material and official images for the movie are of Michael, which is completely misleading since he is almost the smallest component of the film.
It isn’t only Michael that they ruined, however, but instead it feels as if all the returning characters have been downgraded in some way. Laurie doesn’t have the emotional complexity she has had in the past, instead feeling flat and simply jumping from one emotional extreme to the next. Addi doesn’t feel like the same person at all as when we last saw her, turning her into a victimized love interest instead of the hero we saw her becoming previously. It feels like a romance movie at times because of the forced relationship between her and Corey.
Even the town itself feels ruined. Something that I adore about “Halloween Kills” is how it flipped the script on typical slasher films. Instead of the killer hunting the victims, the victims decide to hunt the killer. The whole town unites to kill Michael and almost succeeds. This felt like a turning point for the people of Haddonfield which would lead to major changes to its culture. Well, we’ll never know, because “Halloween Ends” seems to not care about any of that and just takes the town element out of the equation.
This is such a waste in my opinion. I wanted to see people wanting to hunt Michael and also people who didn’t care anymore. I wanted to see how the police would have changed their procedures due to what happened, maybe even a more militarized Haddonfield around Halloween time. This is all taken away by a giant time jump, but I feel as if this mob mentality against the villain instead of the trope of the mob being with the villain is a unique element that could’ve made this movie stand out not only from others within its own franchise but also from others in the horror genre.
All these plot mistakes aside, I just felt confused and bored. I never felt truly excited about anything and the few that did excite me were ultimately wasted. I genuinely feel more entertained writing this review than I did at any point during the actual movie itself. It hurts me to say that about a franchise that I have come to love very dearly. But I truly don’t think I’ve ever been more flat-out disappointed with a movie.
It just feels like a waste in the end. I honestly don’t think that anything that is said in this film really needs to be said. Other than the fact that they kill Michael at the end once and for all (or until they find a way to reboot it again), there was nothing added to the story. They should’ve just taken the last 10-15 minutes of this movie and tacked it onto the end of “Halloween Kills”. The very inclusion of this final movie in the trilogy actually taints the quality of the first two. There would have been far fonder memories of this reboot trilogy if “Halloween Ends” had never hit theaters.
I give “Halloween Ends” a 3/10
“Halloween Ends” is now playing in a theater near you
Samuel M Acosta is a Senior Theatre Comprehensive Major and an Arts and Entertainment writer for Cedars. He likes spending his time watching movies, drinking Dr. Pepper, and writing plays.
Images courtesy of Universal Pictures